Relieved to finally be believed: Mt. Horeb woman details decade-long medical struggles in new book
MOUNT HOREB, Wis. — What do you do when no one believes you?
For six years, Melissa Munson, a wife and mom of two from Mt. Horeb was living with a continual mess of symptoms, struggles, and suspicions.
“Doctors thought I was crazy,” said Munson. “They thought I was doing it to myself. But I knew. I knew something was causing it.”
Shortly after moving into her family’s newly built house in 2005, the symptoms started: nausea, headaches, and malaise. Soon after, Munson needed a hysterectomy, which she never recovered from.
“I continued to bleed, felt horrible, and couldn’t keep food down.”
Munson eventually required a second surgery. Then, an emergency third.
“Then, it kind of got out of control.”
Munson started losing her hair, threw up several times a day, and developed a large hernia.
“Now we’re into like the fourth surgery, and they’re suggesting I fix the hernia that’s causing the nausea. This freaked us out, so we decided to get a second opinion.
That second opinion turned into dozens. Still, no answers. Not even doctors from 20 trips to the Mayo Clinic could ease her pain.
“Nothing was diagnosed,” said Munson. “And so I couldn’t heal.”
After every surgery, Munson’s wounds would open and get infected.
“I thought I was just going to be a sick person. I was just going to be the best sick person that I could be.”
Then, the tipping point: Munson’s husband Steve’s colon ruptured out of the blue.
“Had that not happened, I don’t think we would’ve figured out what was going on in our house.”
Doctors suspected their house could be the problem. Munson’s chiropractor, Dr. Joseph Teff, spearheaded that investigation.
“She was describing to me all this different, unusual stuff to me,” said Teff. “I told her, I gotta get into your house to see what the problem is.”
Teff pinpointed the problem to the couple’s master bedroom where Munson spent years bedridden.
“I got to the gas meter, and then it got really bad.”
Natural gas had been pouring into the Munson’s home for six years, but nobody had smelled a thing.
“I was waiting for someone to call me and say ‘you liar.'”
The family called the gas company and had the leak fixed. Almost immediately, the symptoms vanished.
“We loved out home and yet we felt like we needed to change just to heal.”
So the family made a change: moving to a new home in the same neighborhood. But when the symptoms started again, the Munsons realized they had the same problem.
“I said, ‘Oh my God,’ as soon as I walked in: the cabinetry,” said Teff.
Stains and unnatural products were the source of the symptoms, on top of three more gas leaks.
“It’s so important that people realize we’re not unlucky. We’ve very lucky blessed people. This happens more often than you would think.”
With one wrench and the tightening of two joints, three days later, Munson felt well and started writing.
“I just wanted to get the thoughts out of my head, help my family heal, and move forward from the experience we had.”
She’s now sharing her story in a new book, “God Only Knows.”
“She has a story to tell for anyone who’s going through a health problem that hasn’t found a resolution,” said Teff.
A teacher by trade, Munson is now back in the classroom after two years, relieved to finally be believed.
“It’s how you handle it, it’s how you move through it that either allows you to sink or swim.”
Munson’s book is out now and is available to order online . Munson wrote it under her pseudonym, Kennedy Oliver.
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